Nicole Paiement, conductor; Francesca Zambello, director
War! Earthquakes! Slavery! Disease! Very bad things happen to very good people (and plenty of bad ones too) as a terrific ensemble cast quick-change their way through dozens of colorful characters, performing a witty and effervescent score that includes such classic tunes as “The Best of All Possible Worlds,” “Make Our Garden Grow,” and “Glitter and Be Gay.” Through all its hysterical scouring of 18th-century wickedness and woe, WNO’s first-ever production of Candide still finds a way to move and inspire with life-affirming lessons that, surprisingly, ring just as true today.